Jim Harbaugh is finally Michigans new head coach and officially parted ways with the San Francisco 49ers on Sunday after his team’s win over the Arizona Cardinals. When asked if he intended to take the Michigan job, the coach replied: “There will be announcements made concerning those things.”
The former Michigan quarterback, who starred for legendary Michigan coach Bo Schembechler, compiled a 49-21-1 record (including playoffs) during his four-year stint with the 49ers. Harbaugh went 58-27 during his previous seven years as a college head coach (three years at San Diego, four years at Stanford).
Michigan, meanwhile, is coming off its third losing season in the past seven years as former coach Brady Hoke guided the squad to a 5-7 record in 2014 before being fired on Dec. 2.
News of Harbaugh’s move to Michigan spread rapidly across social media throughout the day Sunday, and appears to have already made an impact on recruiting.
Harbaugh will be introduced to fans tonight at halftime of the U of M/Illinois basketball game.
The logistics of the final deal haven’t yet been released, but Harbaugh definitely wants top assistants to join him.
A bit more detail: Harbaugh contract is approximately $5 million for 7 years, with incentives. Clearly, Michigan would like him to stay.
— John U. Bacon (@Johnubacon) December 30, 2014
Jim Harbaugh told Hackett he did NOT want to be the highest paid coach in CFB, or even the Big Ten. More concerned with pay for assistants.
— John U. Bacon (@Johnubacon) December 30, 2014
The Michigan world is abuzz with the news of Harbaugh coming home, from alumni to recruits, the hire brings a promise of a better future within the program.
Four-star quarterback Alex Malzone remained stalwart with his decision to commit to Michigan while others chose to de-commit – and his patience is paying off.
“I don’t think it’s scary at all, I’m still confident that Michigan is going to bring in someone who they know can get the job done. Because they have to,” Malzone told MLive earlier this month. “The last two coaches haven’t had the success they’ve wanted them to have, and I know Michigan’s working their tails off right now going through a process to find the right guy.
“There’s no doubt in my mind that they’ll definitely do that.”
Other top recruits are making their case known – they believe in what Michigan is doing.i
Chris Clark, a five-star tight end who de-commited from the program the day Hoke was fired, is interested again if Harbaugh is hired.
Kareem Walker, the nation’s top-ranked running back in 2016 is happy about the hire:
Jim Harbaugh to Michigan … 💭〽️
— Al〽️ightyReem (@_KareemWalker) December 28, 2014
Four-star 2016 running back Elijah Holyfield, the son of boxer Evander Holyfield had this to say:
Dylan Crawford, a four-star 2016 receiver from California is getting more interested in Michigan.
2015 pledge Brian Cole — Michigan’s top prospect — told Rivals.com that he’s firm with Michigan again.
— Mike Farrell (@mfarrellsports) December 29, 2014
Five-star cornerback Iman Marshall told ESPN he’d like to visit Michigan now:
— Tom VanHaaren (@TomVH) December 28, 2014
Five-star 2015 defensive back Marcus Lewis told Rivals the same thing.
The Top Recruits are lining up for a chance to talk to the man who could bring Michigan back to glory. But it is not going to be easy. The team needs to hit the ground running, and it’s something that I don’t think is lost on Harbaugh. 247sports reported Monday night that Florida defensive coordinator/interim head coach D.J. Durkin — a former Harbaugh assistant at Stanford — has already been in contact with various recruits about Michigan, suggesting that he may be a part of the team moving forward. While the NCAAF is in a dead period for recruiting, meaning no in-person visits, Harbaugh can reach out with verbal and written contact with the families of the recruits.
UPDATE FROM PRESSER
12:07-Interim AD Hackett formally introduces the 20 head coach for UM, Jim Harbaugh.
12:08- Hackett gives info on 7 year/5 million deal plus incentives.
12:10- Harbaugh takes the podium, introduces himself and talks about his family’s past at Michigan.
12:14- Harbaugh says “Always dreamed about coaching in Michigan”
12:15- Harbaugh thanks the former coach Hoke for his outstanding service.
12:16-Harbaugh-“You have my pledge that I will carry forward the tradition of excellence of the University of Michigan football program.”
12:17- Harbaugh thanks the Michigan community (end of his statement).
12:21- “I want to make Michigan my perminate home, this isn’t just a coaching stop” -Harbaugh
12:25- “I want to win at practice, I want to win in the classrooms, I want to win on the field, in the the fall. I have great expectations”-Harbaugh
12:27- “I made no pros/cons list on this job. I did it from the heart and for my family” -Harbaugh
12:32- on assistant coaches “We are in the process now of looking”-Harbaugh